Mwenemutapa African Studies desires to bring together like-minded folk interested in learning classical African history (Afristory) deliberately hidden, distorted or otherwise kept from the view of the general population, especially African maafans and continental Africans. Our goal is simple: African education. When coming to Mwenemutapa African Studies come ready to teach, come ready to learn. No matter the level of African study, we all have knowledge to share. So, come to share and/or gain knowledge. And, of course, come to have fun. (Students and teachers of research are always welcome).
Together we can build an empire.
What is Mwenemutapa? Mwenemutapa, also spelled, Munamotapa was an ancient African empire in southern Africa, near present-day Zimbabwe. (Empires are described as organized, political states and powers that exact control over large swaths of land and people. This term may not accurately describe the relationship that existed between autonomous ancient African nations). Established about 1100 ACE, the African Shona combined their knowledge of mineral extraction with fair trade policies to become major producers of gold. Beginning in the 1300’s, Mwenemutapa stretched from inland south central Africa to the Indian Ocean.
In 1880 The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland describes Mwenemutapa this way : “It is very well-known that two hundred years ago there was an empire in Central Africa, with which the Dutch and Portuguese traders were well acquainted. We also know that there were provinces called Motapa or Monopotapa, but that is all the information we have about them. I am not sure that the ruins I saw belonged to this extinct race, but I believe so; they were generally in the vicinity of mines, especially gold mines. They were of stone, on tops of mountains, put together without any cement, but so well fitted together that they have stood for hundreds of years. Some of the ruins were formed of blocks of granite in the shape of large bricks. The tops of small bilk were in this way fortified, with openings in the walls. I am not certain that these remains belonged to those who inhabited the Empire of Monopotapa, but I am sure that they belong to no tribe that is at present found in South Africa. I think that some of the stone work was made completely by a wooden fence erected on the top of it. Exploration of these ruins would, I feel confident, be amply rewarded.”(1)
When Europeans first stumbled upon this awesome site they believed that Africans did not have the ability to design and build such magnificence as described above. However, these notions were challenged by Africans and other Europeans who dove into the site’s ruins to uncover its African origins and reveal parts of that nation’s splendid Afristory. Albert Churchward tells us in The Signs and Symbols of Primordial Man that The Bird Stone Pillar – symbolic of Heru (Hr) of Ancient Egypt (KMT) – was found along the ruins. He adds, “These remnants of the past are quite sufficient to prove to those gentlemen who recently explored these ruins, and came to the conclusion that they date only a few hundred years, that they are entirely wrong in their conclusions. Brother Lt.-Col. E. L. de Cordes, 30°, who was in South Africa for three years, informed the writer [Churchward] that in one on the “Ruins” there is a “stone chamber,” with a vast quantity of Papyri, covered with old Egyptian hieroglyphics. A Boer hunter discovered this, and a large quantity was used to light a fire with, and yet still a larger quantity remained there now.”(2)
Why study classical Afristory? That was then, and this is now. We study Afristory to learn who we once were. Afristory can instruct us on where to go in the future, and how to get there. We can use proven solutions of traditional Africans to improve our current situation. Every culture studies the conduct of their ancestors borrowing from them instructions in ways to carry on and – if they are wise – to better the conditions of humans and other creatures of nature going forward.
But maybe it’s just as important to study Afristory because of this man’s prediction that, so far, has come true: “No doubt, as in Asia and South America, the eventual outcome of the colonization of Africa by alien peoples will be a compromise-a dark-skinned race with a white man’s brain.“ This man, Sir Harry H. Johnston, lived at the turn of the 20th century. He was a British imperialist – the white supremacists of his day – who believed that European cultures were far superior to all others. Having been knighted, it’s safe to assume that he rubbed elbows with many like-minded, influential Europeans who desired to negatively influence the traditional African way of thinking, and challenge how African peoples moved about in the world.
It cannot be denied that many Africans and African maafans have tossed aside our own traditions in favor of European ones, resigned to making our own Afristory background noise. Yet, I had been unaware that in the European’s desire to take control of the world’s natural resources their plot, or goal included erasing the Africans’ awareness of self before I read it on page 315 of Johnston’s own book, A History of Colonization of Africa by Alien Races, written in 1905. Other revelations of Europe’s true motivations for going into Africa and snatching away Africans are waiting to be revealed.
Who can Join? Mwenemutapa African Studies is open to every one of every age. All Mwenemutapa members hold these truths self-evident: (1) All life started in Africa, so logically civilizations were first conceived and matured there; and (2) Each person has the duty, obligation, and right to learn all he/she can about his/her own culture.
In addition, cursing* is not permitted and, please, leave your anger on the other side of the classroom door. On your first day in class, we encourage and expect all Mwenemutapa members to use indigenous African vocabulary whenever possible. Language is one method we will use to bridge the wide expanse that divides us from our African home.
Mwenemutapa African Studies – where our consciousness rises in unison with our hair. Joining this study group is free, we only need to pay attention. (And bring a notebook and pencil and pen, too).
Mwenemutapa African Studies
We hope to offer the following resources for members in the near future:
Saturday/Sunday Meetings-Times and Locations To Be Determined
A Robust Curriculum-To Be Determined
Online Study-To Be Determined
(1) E. Holub, “On the Central South-African Tribes.” The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland 10 (1880): 4.
(2) Albert Churchward, The Signs and Symbols of Primordial Man, p.75
*Olaudah Equiano was only a child when men forcefully stole him from his home in Ile-Ibinu/Ubini (Great Benin) and marched him to a ship that carried him into forced servitude. He writes in his autobiography that Africans born to his village did not use foul language. According to Equiano, cursing is a behavior learned from Europeans. Breaking poor patterns of behavior learned at the feet of Europeans is an admirable goal.
Copyright©Sheshet Kemet 2015